Belfast Telegraph

Half of teenagers have been bullied, says shock survey

By Anna Maguire

The shock scale of bullying among teenagers in Northern Ireland has been revealed by a new survey which shows nearly half have suffered.

Of 2,000 local teenagers who were polled, nearly half (48%) pointed to their appearance as the reason they were bullied.

The survey was carried out by UK charity BeatBullying over July and August.

The findings, released today, found that issues such as clothes, body appearance and weight are all leading to bullying both inside and outside schools, according to local teenagers polled.

Girls aged between 12 and 18 were also more likely to be on the receiving end of bullying, with 52% of those polled revealing their experiences of bullying, compared to 44% of their male peers.

Mark Langhammer from the Association of Teachers and Lecturers said: "It's a problem in schools and becoming a bigger one on social media.

"It's important that schools take an active approach to bullying."

The 'Stronger Together' research reveals that 82% of young people reported that they worry about the way they look..

In Northern Ireland, the issues were largely the same.

Taunting over what clothes teenagers wear accounted for bullying among 10% of those polled.

Body appearance was a feature of bullying for 7% of the survey's participants in Northern Ireland, compared to 17% across the UK.

Weight was also an issue for 10% of participants, compared to 18% across the UK.

The survey also reveals that teenagers here consider the opinion of friends as more important that that of family members.

However, the survey also revealed bullying among friends, which was most common among girls surveyed here.

But local teens were found to be generally happier than their peers in Britain.

FACTFILE

* 48% of teenagers in Northern Ireland have been bullied for the way they look

* 16% cited general appearance as a reason for being bullied

* 10% pointed to weight as a reason for being bullied

* 10% said clothes was a reason

* 7% said body weight was a reason

* 19% cited bad skin

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